how to wash eggs from the coop

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Not all eggs need to be cleaned when brought in from the coop but sometimes they do. This guide on how to wash eggs from the coop will help you with a few basic tips that will clean things up when needed.

Raising chickens in a way that keeps their eggs cleaner until you can collect them for your home.

How to wash eggs from the coop

The best part of raising chickens is all the amazing eggs they give but let’s be honest, they are not picture perfect every time.

Where we live, especially in the spring time, things get wet and stay wet for days on end. This can make a mess of our chicken run which can also make a mess of our eggs.

a chicken in a nesting box

Should you wash freshly laid chicken eggs?

There is no reason to wash eggs from the coop if they are clean and free of dirt. When an egg is laid it has a natural coating known as the “bloom”, which protects it from bacteria. If you were to wash the egg, that would remove that protective layer.

When you remove the bloom, oxygen, and bacteria can pass through the eggshell, speeding up the rate of spoilage. By keeping the bloom intact, your coop eggs will last three months rather than two if you were to wash them.

Many times, all you may need to do is give your eggs a light brush with your hand to remove any loose dust and put them in the fridge for storage.

how to wash eggs from the coop (1)

When should you wash eggs from the coop?

Sometimes, no matter what you do, there will be times when eggs will need to be cleaned or washed.

#1. The eggs are muddy or dirty. This can happen if the run is wet or muddy. A dry run is important for clean eggs, so be sure to use tips to dry things up when the rains hit.

#2. There is feces on the eggs. This can happen if there is not enough roost room for your flock and some of your chickens sleep in the nesting boxes. Chickens poop quite a bit when sleeping, so it is best to ensure they have plenty of room on the roost.

#3. Broken egg. This can happen if you do not have enough bedding inside of the nesting boxes. Be sure to check boxes for adequate bedding and replenish as needed. We keep a bale of straw inside our coop to fill up any nesting boxes at chore time.

A woman putting straw into a nesting box inside of a chicken coop

how to wash eggs from the coop

If you have eggs that are muddy or have manure on them, you will want to wash them before you use them for eating. These tips will ensure you are doing things safely.

There are two things to remember when washing eggs. First, never soak your eggs in water especially when there is manure involved. Once that bloom is removed the protection is gone. And second, avoid using cold water and instead use warm when washing eggs.

Okay, now onto the washing.

#1. Have the water running in your sink being sure it is not cold or hot.

#2. Hold the egg under the water to remove any mud or dirt. if this does not clean the egg, you can use a scrubber (one used only to clean eggs), being sure to be gentle so you do not damage or crack the shell.

#3. If eggs are still dirty I will use gentle soap and this usually takes care of any stubborn mud or manure.

#4. Once washed place eggs on a clean towel and let them air dry. Be sure the eggs are spaced apart to allow air flow.

#5. Once dry, you can store your eggs in the refrigerator for 3 – 4 months or longer.

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How do you know if an egg is still good to eat?

You can try this trick if you want to ensure your eggs are still fresh enough to eat. Place an egg in a glass of water, making sure it is completely submerged. If it sinks, it is good to eat; if it floats, it may not be.

Notice I said, “may not be.” There is a chance the egg is still okay to eat, but it is not fresh, and that is important to know.

Tips for handling clean eggs from the coop

Proper handling of clean eggs from the coop is important to ensure you have fewer instances of washing.

#1. Wash your hands before and after handling eggs to prevent any contamination.

#2. Use a dedicated basket or bucket to collect eggs from the coop.  

#3. As you collect eggs check each one to be sure there are no cracks or damage.

#4. If you find eggs that are soiled, keep them separate from any clean eggs you collect.

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By having a routine for collecting eggs as well as a system for helping to keep things clean both inside and outside the coop you will have the best eggs to enjoy every day.

Raise healthy chickens and encourage clean eggs to reduce the times you need to clean them. If you do have dirty eggs refer to this list of how to wash eggs from the coop to ensure you are doing things the best way.

More Egg Resources:

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